The Etsy Blog

Short Stories: Hand-Forged Garden Tools handmade and vintage goods

Here at Etsy, we believe that the story behind an object is often just as fascinating as the object itself. Short Stories is our series dedicated to telling the tales behind extraordinary pieces found or created by Etsy sellers. 

Here’s Tuli with the tale of these heirloom-worthy tools.

Historically, craftspeople have a personal attachment with their hand tools. Gardeners are no different. Handcrafted in Bozeman, Montana, this collection of garden tools exemplify fine American craft. Each tool is individually built using traditional blacksmithing techniques. Steel is heated to a red glow in the forge and then shaped over the anvil with a hammer. All joinery is done using solid steel rivets and each tool is set into its own hand-turned American black walnut handle, creating a long-lasting garden tool with no welds. The tight grain of this strong hardwood makes it very durable. Best of all, it just feels good in your hand. They are the perfect gift for anyone with an eye for high-quality traditional crafts and a passion for gardening.

As a craftsman, I am inspired by the durability of steel and its malleability as an artistic material. As a gardener, I am inspired to create tools as timeless works of art for use in the soil by fellow gardeners. The first rule of tools making is that it needs to work; from there the rest is born. Function drives the design process. Unlike ornamental work, tool making has the burden (and opportunity!) of functionality. Traditional crafts are still very much a part of the American psyche and almost everyone I talk to has a tradesperson in the last couple generations of their family. There is an added personal connection that comes with purchasing directly from a craftsman that you can identify and talk with.

Have you created or come across an object with an extraordinary story that needs to be told? Email us!

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